Word of the Day: shade

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Word of the Day
February 22, 2016
shade (noun, verb)
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A tree provides shade.
Shade is the darkness and coolness of a place that is protected from sunlight. A shade is something that reduces light or heat, like on a lamp or a window. A shade is also the degree of darkness or lightness of a color or, figuratively, a degree or amount of something. As a verb, shade means 'to darken by blocking sunlight,' or in the art world, 'to create light and shadow in a drawing or painting.' It also means 'to change the degree or amount of something.'


Example sentences


It was a hot, sunny day, so Veronica sat in the shade of the trees.
Jerry bought a new shade for his lamp.
"Can you pull the shade down, please? The light is getting in my eyes."
"I'm looking for some blue paint, but I don't like this shade. Do you have anything darker?"
A hat can shade your face from the heat of the midday sun.
The face in the portrait seemed to come to life as the artist shaded it.
Sarah always seems to shade her responses to fit what she thinks people want to hear.


Multi-word forms
a shade: a small amount. Example: "Could you say that again with a shade more enthusiasm?"
throw shade (US, informal): say nasty things about someone to make them look bad. Example: It was obvious Eugene was jealous by the way he was throwing shade at his brother."
put somebody or something in the shade: make a person or an achievement seem less impressive by achieving more. Example: "Everyone was impressed when Fiona got her degree, but when her sister got a PhD, it really put her in the shade."
Additional information
shades (always in the plural): sunglasses
Did you know?
The related adjective shady can describe a place where there is shade (eg, "a shady spot on the grass"). However, it also has a more figurative meaning that is very common in informal English. In this sense, shady can refer to a person you are suspicious of, or a place that is possibly dangerous. For example, you could say, "My sister's friend Hal is shady; I don't trust him!" or "Take a taxi home; this neighborhood is shady at night!" We also have the expression shady dealings, which refers to an activity that is illegal or possibly illegal.
Other forms
shadeless (adjective)
Shade dates back to before 900 and the noun comes from the Middle English word s(c)hade and Old English word sceadu; it is a cognate with the German word Schatten, the Gothic word skadus, and the Greek word skótos. The verb comes from the Middle English word schaden.
Shade in other languages
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